April 24, 2018

Wyden: FAA Must Address Reported Allegiant Air Passenger Safety Concerns

Airline’s schedule include Oregon flights in Eugene and Medford

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today pressed the Federal Aviation Administration to answer questions about Allegiant Air passenger safety after a troubling “60 Minutes” report about the carrier, which has a flight schedule that includes the Eugene and Medford airports.

Among the questions Wyden asks in his letter to Acting FAA Administrator Daniel K. Elwell are whether Allegiant’s reportedly high number of safety incidents requires any action; and why the FAA never implemented its’ own staff’s recommended maximum penalties for the airline.

The senator also asks how many times FAA has recorded incidents where an Allegiant aircraft was missing vital equipment before takeoff, and whether an Allegiant pilot was fired for evacuating a plane that rescue personnel reported had smoke coming from its engine.

“The unusually high number of safety incidents for an airline Allegiant’s size, including failed engines, emergency landings, aborted takeoffs and smoke filled cabins, raises real questions about how the airline prioritizes passenger safety,” Wyden wrote. “Additionally, I am troubled by the allegation that, at the request of Allegiant, the FAA failed to act on these reports.

“Oregonians fly on Allegiant airplanes out of Eugene and Medford, and I want to ensure they are buckling into airplanes that are prepared to fly and will reach their destinations safely,” he wrote. “The FAA has the responsibility to ensure airlines are safe for everyone in the United States. Safety should be the number one priority for all airlines, and safety should never be sacrificed in an effort to increase profits.”

A copy of the entire letter is here.

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